North Hykeham Town Council is responsible for 279 street lights roughly one third of the total number of lights in the town. Last year when Lincolnshire County Council stated that they would save over one million pounds each year by switching the street lights off between midnight and 6am, the Town Council debated whether to take similar action. As it would have cost the Town Council £11,000 to fit the necessary time switches the committee decided not to proceed.
Two months after this decision was taken we were alerted by Eon our electricity supplier to the fact that the six yearly safety check was due on each light. This costs the Council £15,000 every six years. This was debated by the Community Committee again at a later meeting and £15,000 had to be found from the budget. However we did find out that whilst doing the safety checks the time switch could be fitted at little extra cost. This process has already started and so gradually each street will have their lights switched off between midnight and 6am once the team get to work in that area. The total electricity bill for the 279 lights is just under £8,000 each year, this will reduce to £4,400 for a full year when the new timing is in place.
The police inform us that there has been no rise in crime where the County Council have introduced the new timing.